Texas Wesleyan University is celebrating it’s 125th anniversary this year.

Throughout the university’s 125 years there’s no doubt that drastic changes have been made. There have been official name changes, building changes, several renovations, and even changes to our very own mascot.

1890

Today, most people know our mascot to be ram. But, the first official mascot was a parrot. This was when the name of the university was Polytechnic College which was founded in the fall 1890. But, the university didn’t open until the fall of 1891, according to the university archivist Louis Sherwood.

1906

The Panther City Parrot 1906
The Panther City Parrot yearbook in 1906. (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood, university archivist)

“They had the parrot at first but a lot of students didn’t like that,” he said. “It didn’t seem fierce enough I guess.”

1911

The university made the decision to change the mascot to a panther due to the legend of panthers in downtown Fort Worth, Sherwood said.

“They felt like it was more interesting if they could have something a little more robust,” he said.

The Panther 1911
The Panther yearbook in 1911. (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood)

1914

The university was officially named Texas Women’s College in the fall of 1914. During this period there was some sports competition, but there is some uncertainty to weather a mascot really was present, he said.

“I don’t know if they had a mascot per say,” he said.

1934

Finally, in 1934 the university adopted the name we know it was today, Texas Wesleyan University. In the same year, the board of trustees voted to readmit men into the university. The school went back to being co-ed and that’s when the ram became our mascot.

1935

New mascot
The Rambler front cover from Oct. 8, 1935. (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood, university archivist)

Wesleyan’s spirit coordinator, Carolyn Ikens said the university used to have two LIVE rams. One was female and the other was male, known as Willie.

“Her name was Wilamena,” Ikens said. “When we got a mascot suit we changed it to Wilamae.”

Cheerleaders spark spirit of days past
Cheerleaders spark spirit of days past (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood, university archivist)
Ram mascot, Mike wood doubles as drummer. (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood, university archivist)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A page from The Rambler. (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood, university archivist)

Ikens said they participated in several parades and even made appearances to games in the gym. The two rams were actually kept on campus, but due to liability issues they were no longer included in campus activities.

FullSizeRender (17)
From a page of The Rambler. (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood)
FullSizeRender (18)
From a page of the Rambler. (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood, university archivist)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“The ram has been featured in the Fort Worth Stock Show parade, and the Fort Worth Parade of Lights.” Sherwood said.

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From a page of The Rambler. (Photo courtesy of Louis Sherwood, university archivist)

1990

The ram and cheerleaders in 1990. (Photo credit: Sargent N. Hill)

Ikens said that the university didn’t get the female suit until about 2012.

“I wanted to have more variety in our look.” she said.

Willie and Wilamae can be seen at most home basketball games, President’s Picnic, Mid-night Madness, and many other campus events.

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Samantha Rodriguez

Samantha Rodriguez

1 Comment

  1. Allen Henderson
    December 5, 2015 at 4:17 pm — Reply

    Samantha: Your article on the Mascot is wonderful.
    – Allen Henderson, Provost

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